After saying these things, Jesus headed straight up to Jerusalem.
When he got near Bethphage and Bethany at the mountain called Olives, he sent off two of the disciples with instructions:
"Go to the village across from you. As soon as you enter, you'll find a colt tethered, one that has never been ridden. Untie it and bring it.
If anyone says anything, asks, 'What are you doing?' say, 'His Master needs him.'"
The two left and found it just as he said.
As they were untying the colt, its owners said, "What are you doing untying the colt?"
They said, "His Master needs him."
They brought the colt to Jesus. Then, throwing their coats on its back, they helped Jesus get on.
As he rode, the people gave him a grand welcome, throwing their coats on the street.
Right at the crest, where Mount Olives begins its descent, the whole crowd of disciples burst into enthusiastic praise over all the mighty works they had witnessed:
Blessed is he who comes, the king in God's name! All's well in heaven! Glory in the high places!
Some Pharisees from the crowd told him, "Teacher, get your disciples under control!"
But he said, "If they kept quiet, the stones would do it for them, shouting praise."
When the city came into view, he wept over it.
"If you had only recognized this day, and everything that was good for you! But now it's too late.
In the days ahead your enemies are going to bring up their heavy artillery and surround you, pressing in from every side.
They'll smash you and your babies on the pavement. Not one stone will be left intact. All this because you didn't recognize and welcome God's personal visit."
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)